It’s always a good day to write; especially, if you’re a comic book reviewer and you crack your eyes open in the morning, to find that you’ve been gifted new material to read. That said, not all new material is going to be great. That was the case today, as I read the conclusion to Behemoth. In a word: disappointing – at least, to me.
Star Trek: Behemoth (Part 2 of 2)
Published by: IDW Publishing
Cover by: Cat Staggs
Written by: Mike Johnson
Art by: Cat Staggs
Colored by: Wes Hartman
Lettered by: Neil Uyetake
Story Consultant: Roberto Orci
Edited by: Sarah Gaydos
OVERVIEW: Into their Five-Year Mission, the Enterprise has diverted it’s course and answered a distress call; they find an unknown alien species, fighting an enemy of remarkable power, with a warning to Captain Kirk to flee, while he still has time. But, is it already too late, and – what actions will the captain take to save his ship and crew, as well as anyone in Behemoth’s path?
THE STORY: This seems to be a re-imagining of TOS‘s ‘The Doomsday Machine’ – only, replacing Commodore Decker’s character with that of the unknown alien, and instead of Decker’s ship being the target, it’s the alien’s home world that’s been lost to this monstrosity of nature. Instead of a ‘planet’ killer, it likes munching on stars.
That said, I did like the first contact scenario this story has, as the crew acclimates this new alien onto the ship and tries to understand it. Plus – Johnson brings ethical questions into play here, as to how to deal with Behemoth’s ‘appetite’ (as it were), and if it has the right to exist, just because it’s different from us.
I wasn’t too keen on Spock’s argument, though; regardless of his ‘the needs of the many’ argument that he posits. And, it’s Scotty (bless his heart) who takes him to task for it; I expected Bones to be the one to go-the-rounds, though. I will say, I liked this new alien we’re meeting, and the actions he takes to ensure, not only the safety of Kirk’s crew, but the galaxy, at large.
My problem with this issue, was that it leaves you hanging. This was to be a conclusion to this story – right? That’s not the case, as we wait for Part 1 of Eurydice, next month, in issue #43. Also, there was no follow-up in regards to the Chekov/Irina or Kirk/Marcus storylines, from issue #41. I found that a bit frustrating. That could have been a nice bookend for this issue, as that’s how this story opened.
THE ART: Once again, I’m not entirely happy with this issue. For example: the interiors of the Enterprise are lacking in details, and the brightly-lit, state-of-the-art bridge we’re used to, seems dull and muddy-colored: yet, there is lighting shown in almost 30 different places within a particular bridge panel.
The likenesses of the crew aren’t consistent, either. Example: in one panel, Scotty is dead-on; while, in another, I thought he was a new crew member, as he looks nothing like Scotty. However, there are good likenesses throughout this issue, and I will argue that Kirk and Uhura look amazing. There’s a great Keenser cameo, too.
The exterior art is pretty awesome (for the most-part); I particularly loved the Enterprise at-warp panels, and one where the Enterprise is set against a bright green nebula. I wasn’t impressed with Behemoth, itself, though, as it kept fluctuating in its appearance, from panel to panel. Of course, that could be their way of showing its sentience, and I can live with that, I suppose.
THE COVER(S): The main cover shows the Enterprise, seemingly in the tentacular (or, is that water?) clutches of something large; indeed, it’s difficult to distinguish what exactly it is. Kirk and Spock are well done, but they’re wearing tunics that are more in-step with TOS, and not those of the ongoing movies, in their lack of detail. It’s a good cover, but not great.
The second (sub cover) is another photo-op (as was Part 1); only it’s Dr. McCoy, this time, hard at work in sickbay.
OVERVIEW: In my opinion, this seems to be another opportunity to revamp a TOS episode to fit into this universe. While it’s a good ‘episode,’ it’s not a stand-out. In my opinion, while the art is good, it’s not great. I would collect this two-part story, only because it’s part of the ongoing series; however, it’s not an issue I would revisit. I’d like to see some deviation, as we saw in The Q Gambit; it was fresh, new and left me hungry for more – like, say…a star eater.
‘Til, next-time, see ya ‘out there…’
Lt. Eric Cone